I Looked At My LinkedIn Account Today and Couldn’t Believe What I Saw

Minute Read

Photo by Adam Solomon on Unsplash

Just like you, when I open my LinkedIn account, I see people who want to connect with me. And isn’t that what LinkedIn is supposed to be about, making new business friends? However, all too often, I’m baffled as to why they want to connect with me.

I confess I’m not sure the best way to participate on LinkedIn. I’ve got lots and lots of connections, but we don’t connect. It seems like a group of people who randomly ‘connect,’ but nothing comes of it. 

Of course, some people will ‘help’ me figure it out, generate leads, and who knows what, but shouldn’t it be simple?

Or other people act like trolls. They have no reason to connect with you; they’re too young or old with an unprofessional picture. It just feels creepy.

Now I look at the connection requests and laugh at the messages and the angle they’re pitching. Imagine you’re at an in-person event and opening a conversation with a stranger like these examples. These are all from   today, there were funnier ones, but I deleted them before deciding on this rant.

Below is my response in green, (although not shared with them) and all spelling and punctuation is the other party.

Have a motive

  • I see that you are currently doing some freelancing, So I thought I would reach out and ask you to connect if you are willing. [Insurance Agent]
    • I guess you didn’t notice that I am a freelance copywriter, not ‘doing some freelancing.’
  • Hi Linda, I work with individuals, families, self employed and small businesses and would like to connect. If you or anyone you know is looking for affordable health coverage, I would love to help.
    • It’s all about what they’re doing vs. the stranger you’re hoping to connect with - what about me?
  • Hello Linda, I would like to join your professional network. Cheers!
    • Another insurance agent
  • Hi Linda, Looking forward to connecting with you! -Thomas
    • Another financial advisor
  • Hi Linda , Thanks for connecting! I specialize in affordable Health and Life insurance for families, self employed individual and small business owners. If you know someone that might be in need of my services, please pass along my information. 
    • Another insurance agent.
  • Our company is recruiting, and I want you to be part of our growing team! Are you interested in a part / full-time business opportunity?
    • Recruiting for insurance agents - no thank you.
  • I am glad to introduce you InvoZone, based in Ontario, Canada. We have a team of professional experts providing development services. It would be beneficial for both of us to get connected.Thanks 
    • This doesn’t make sense; it doesn’t sound like the English language.
  • I see that you’re in the Life Coach industry and would love to add you to my network of professionals.
    • My profile doesn’t say that I’m a life coach.
  • Hi [FirstName], I'm reaching out from Opera Event. We make high-quality, low-cost, and super effective influencer ads for brands too stay competitive in this increasing crowded digital market. Here's a link to one of our demo reels and more info:
    • This is a gem; they are obviously using an automated service that fills in the first name as they spam you.
  • Are you targetting restaurants? Digital marketing for restaurants is very hard, measuring results is near to impossible. Data is all disconnected, no automation exists, it is a mess. I have developed technology that agencies can use as a can opener to success.
    • First of all, his bio/profile says he’s a financial consultant, but he’s talking about restaurants. And my bio/profile says nothing about restaurants. Why me?
  • I wish I had your skills for copywriting. I'm learning more and more how important that skillset is. Hoping to connect.
    • Interesting, kind of homespun, but selling accounting services at the end of the day.

No clear plan

  • What’s up Linda James Bennett!? I’m just looking to add some agency owners like myself to my network!
    • Really! This is how you start a conversation with a stranger?
  • I am looking to expand my network of digital marketing professionals, would you be open to connecting?
    • Can’t you take an extra second to come up with something better than the LinkedIn canned pitch?
  • Are you interested to learn how you can create content that truly resonates? At Mindspeller, we use neuro-semantic AI to trigger your clients' intended brand associations. Perhaps you're currently working for a brand for which we can prepare a custom demo for you?
    • Does he know I write for a living?
  • I am looking to expand my network of digital marketing professionals, would you be open to connecting? 
    • Why are we like collectible dolls or something? You show off your ‘digital marketing professionals collection’ to all your friends.
  • Hope you're doing great this holiday season.Looking forward to Linking Up with you Linda James Bennett. Interested to hear more about If you want your message to be clear, compelling, engaging, easy to understand, and don't have time to waste then you need a conversion copywriter by your side.
    • He completely swiped my bio profile - that’s just rude.
  • We both went to Concordia University, and I am looking to expand my Concordia alumni network. Would you like to connect?
    • Nothing in my bio/profile says I went to Concordia University.

What to sell me on how to use LinkedIn for leads

  • Hi Linda James Bennett — I just came across your profile and noticed you're in the digital marketing space. Open to connecting?
    • That’s the best you’ve got from a salesperson?
  • Hi Linda James Bennett, Shiny Object Marketing caught my attention. I came across your profile and I'm keen to connect. We at ThisThat are pioneering influencer led market research and I'm looking to engage with thought leaders in the space.
    • Just what everyone wants to get the standardized canned message. 
  • Hi Linda James Bennett, would be great to connect. I know owners like you rely on building long term business relationships through networking. We currently work with consultants automating outreach for them to bring them new business opportunities effortlessly. Interested in a free trial?
    • He’s really saying that it would be great to connect if I can sell you my system. And someone forgot to tell him that he needs an image for his profile, not his logo.

Kind of creepy

  • I noticed that we share mutual connections and I just had a chance to check out Shiny Object Marketing and it left a strong impression on me - I'd love to have you in my network!
    • I know you can’t see the picture of this guy; let me tell you, it’s creepy. Along with the fact we have nothing in common.

Nice One

  • I would love to be a part of your network. Looking to expand my contacts and connect with you.
    • This is great; he wants to join my network; he puts the other person first. It’s honest and to the point.

Next time you’re on LinkedIn to expand your network, develop a strategy that doesn’t offend the other person. I have a big network, so I will pick and choose whom I connect with because I don’t need more insurance agents, financial consultants, or LinkedIn system junkies to sell me something.

Of course, we’re all there to sell our stuff, me too, but let’s think this through. If we’re going to be in a networking platform, let’s network. After we connect, how about a hello message. Sort of like you’d do in person. 

How is LinkedIn working for you? Share your thoughts with me. Some say they love the platform, but I don’t know... I don’t get it. And I suspect an ever-larger number of people who don’t check-in at any regularity on the platform.

In summary: LinkedIn has the potential to grow your business as a B2B entrepreneur. If you want to grow your connections, be thoughtful about whom you want to reach out to. Consider your messaging. What would you say in a networking meeting that doesn’t sound weird or offensive? 

If you'd like to chat about your next project, reach out to me. Linda@shinyobjectmarketing.com

Linda James Bennett; day 21 of 365 writing an article every day. Making you a shiny object in the world.

Linda James Bennett is obsessed with creating clear brand messages to help business owners win online. She believes that marketing shouldn't be complicated to be great. Let's face it, as a business owner you need to focus on the bottom line that drives sales, not being a copywriter. She is also an author of the book, Becoming A Seriously Happy Special Needs Mom ~ 21 Steps to Finding Your Happy Place, on Amazon.com

Linda James Bennett

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